Yawn! Steve Coogan’s Cock and Bullshit

stevecoogan

A cock and bull story is right. Laurence Sterne, the author of Tristram Shandy is probably rolling over in his grave. I understand how all of the digressions and convolutions played out are supposedly in the spirit of Tristram Shandy, the shaggy dog story (thanks Guy, I had never heard that phrase before) however, what is not being said, or I should say criticized about this film is how Steve Coogan’s gang monopolizes Sterne’s technique for more woe is me, celebrities are misunderstood and are people too rhetoric, while at the same time creating a loophole that allows them to get off the hook when they do participate in human behavior/vice.

Steve Coogan plays an actor named Steve Coogan who plays Tristram Shandy. Supposedly, this is the brilliance. Perhaps brilliance for celebrity culture, but I say as a viewing and at times paying audience, and I may add conscious human, I find it intellectually insulting. There seems to be an atmosphere created all for Steve Coogan and no one else, a “let them eat cake” angle. Coincidently it is very fitting that Coogan has a supporting role in a Marie Antoinette bio-pic, directed by Sofia Coppola because Coogan is very much the male equivalent to Coppola’s females. The “it’s all about me, and I can erase your existence with a glance” kind of attitude.

Once the scene leaves Trstram Shandy and enters into the realm of Steve Coogan the entire dynamics change and become grating. Actually, the Tristram Shandy scenes invite discussion on areas of feminism, particularly gender ideas about obstetrics. Other than that it is nothing more than the typical contrived comedy of the boy peeing out the window, window falling on penis, thus circumcising boy, weights removed for the war effort, the war that injures the uncle in his where else but private area.

Yes the anticipation of the action returning back to Tristram Shandy is there, so yes the anticipation the audience feels waiting for the point as in a good shaggy dog story is achieved. However, it is that very lack of returning to Tristram Shandy and the harping on with the pseudo-Coogan that destroys any pleasure in the movie. I could I guess be interested in the Steve Coogan segments if it was in fact Steve Coogan segments, but remember it is not Steve Coogan, it is Steve Coogan the actor playing an actor named Steve Coogan. It is like standing outside of a private joke and not being privy to the joke and at the same time appreciating that the players are having fun with their private joke. One cannot laugh or appreciate with the intensity as the in-players, which in itself makes it irritating, because a world of exclusion is created while simultaneously trying to sell the desire for others to want in that exclusive world.

Just like Steve Coogan, Rob Brydon plays an actor name Rob Brydon. The scenes when Coogan is not playing Shandy or Brydon is not playing Toby Shandy are not “reality” because other actors around them for instance, Kelly MacDonald, Naomie Harris, and Jeremy Northam or not playing people that have their names. MacDonald is Jenny and Harris is Jennie (oh the play on the names is just side splitting, NOT!, because the one Jenny (MacDonald) he has a baby with and the other Jennie (Harris) he wants to get in her pants, but no, not really) and Northam is a Mark.

Then there are all the scenes that pit Brydon and Coogan against each other as to expose that actors are narcissists and egomaniacs, but no not really, because that is not who they really are, they are only actors playing those actors. How tiresome. It all became clear when I watched the interview of Steve Coogan. He went to great lengths to say that people call him Alan Partridge and he must correct them and say he is not Alan Partridge but is Steve Coogan. Yet he attempts to create a world that cannot define Steve Coogan. That is narcissism. Get over it Steve Coogan, you are an actor, and just as you take advantage of being an actor, with all the stereotypes included, you must deal with the misconceptions as well.

I am so not impressed and I so want my __pounds, ___shillings, and ___ pence back.

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2 thoughts on “Yawn! Steve Coogan’s Cock and Bullshit

  1. What a messy mess! I’m chastened.I’d forgotten to mention that the film didn’t get good reviews, but you hadn’t seen it when you last posted so I thought I’d be quiet. I didn’t see it because the trailers looked looked irritating.’Comic’ (I can’t call them Comedies) films in Britain are often a total let down. They leave feeling depressed. Aside from a couple of Monty Python films that is; but surprise surprise this was due to the vision of team-mate from America: Terry Gilliam.

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  2. “‘Comic’ (I can’t call them Comedies) films in Britain are often a total let down.”

    Oh but I have seen four episodes of Black Adder and I just love it!

    I’m hard on comedies because it must, MUST be witty and FUNNY! Cock and Bull was almost witty and never funny.

    There is a scene when he is in a womb. Earlier he was placed in the womb and it was lifesize (as in as big as a grown man), but then later when he is dreaming it is small like the size of a woman’s womb. Everyone can see him in it because it has a clear front. They all comment about how small he is, he is humiliated. HA HA HA HA HA, NOT!

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